Building a Bird House with My Daughter

My daughter has wanted to build a birdhouse for a while. I told her first she needed to figure out what type of bird she wanted to build it for. She decided to make a house for one of the Blue Jays we always see in our back yard. Googling Blue Jay house, I found some decent plans at the ShopSmith Hands-On website, I liked the fact they had a nice set of plans and a cut-list.

While building the house was fun, it turns out that this wasn't the best project for a six year old. While she did well with the measuring and gluing, there wasn't much else she could help with. She didn't like the noise my miter and table saw made. She wasn't necessarily afraid of the machines but couldn't even help me support the boards because she had her hands over her ears. Unfortunately I didn't have a set of clean earplugs and my muffs hurt her head. Drilling holes and using a screwdriver were also beyond her dexterity.

I think I am going to look for a hand miter box with a pull saw rather than the push style saw. She loves to saw with my pull saw and it would be nice if she could actually make cuts accurate enough to build things. Maybe I'll look for a small brace too, I'm sure she would love drilling holes.

Tags: bird house, daughter

Materials: cedar, glue

Tools: drill press, hand saw, miter saw, table saw


Bill Fiegen's picture

Remove the perch. Birds don't need it. It's cute but not safe for the nesting birds.
Without the perch other birds can't sit and look in and invade the nest.

Benjamen Johnson's picture

Thanks for the tip Bill. Not that I didn't take you word for it, but I Googled birdhouse perches, and most of the sites I found echoed your advice.

This afternoon I'll have to go check to make sure no birds have taken residence, otherwise I'll wait for spring to cut off the perch (I don't want to disturb the nest)